Wednesday, December 1, 2021

PELTIER: Senator Leahy email

Leonard Peltier does not deserve clemency


Dear Senator Leahy:


This is in response to your support of clemency for convicted multiple murderer Leonard Peltier that appeared in a recent Huffpost article. Regretfully, the Huffpost article simply repeats many of the proven falsehoods surrounding Peltier’s conviction and ironically quotes James Reynolds whose claims regarding the Peltier matter have been completely discredited. 


Peltier’s conviction has received numerous judicial reviews addressing all the allegations of an alleged wrongful conviction. 


I would urge you to have a staff member carefully review Peltier’s appellate history, a history that would be too lengthy to repeat here, however just a few of many, follow. The court decisions are available at


The direct and circumstantial evidence of Peltier’s guilt was strong…” “…Peltier’s contention of manufactured evidence are far from convincing.” 

(Direct Appeal, 8th Circuit, 9/14/78)


When all is said and done, however, a few simple but very important facts remain. The casing introduced into evidence had in fact been extracted from the Wichita AR-15. That point was not disputed; although the defense had its own ballistics expert, it offered no contrary evidence.” 

(8th Circuit, 9/11/86; Peltier’s AR-15 was recovered in Wichita, Kansas)


Previous federal court decisions provided the (parole) Commission with ample facts to support its conviction that Peltier personally shot Agents Coler and Williams.” “Neither the conviction nor any of the subsequent court decisions have been overturned.” (10th Circuit Court of Appeals, 11/4/2003)


Senator Leahy, there are indeed many more significant and detailed references and conclusions by the courts – many more. 


If there was even one Constitutional violation in the Peltier matter, we would not be discussing it today.


Peltier’s crime was a heinous and brutal cold-blooded murder of two already severely wounded FBI Agents. There is absolutely no dispute concerning how the shooting at Pine Ridge started. Agent Williams was on the FBI radio telling those in the FBI Rapid City office and other Agents on the Reservation that they were about to come under fire, the shooting began, and they heard him say “I’m hit.” 


Agents’ Coler and Williams were critically wounded by rifle fire at a distance by Peltier and others and then, after being incapacitated, were both shot in the face at point blank range by Peltier with his AR-15. 


There are many things the U.S. Government can do to support our Native American population, but releasing Peltier for his despicable crimes will not correct any wrongs of the past, but instead will use the guilt of these wrongs to free a guilty multi-murderer. 


Peltier remains an unrepentant murderer and should continue to serve the remainder of his consecutive life sentences and the additional seven consecutive years for an armed escape. 



Ed Woods